UCLA Basketball Players Could Face 3-10 Years in Prison After They're Accused of Shoplifting in China

Crime - Inside Edition Staff

President Trump and first lady Melania Trump may be enjoying a warm reception in Beijing, China, but an embarrassing diplomatic incident is threatening to cast a shadow over their historic visit.

In Shanghai, just 700 miles south of Beijing three UCLA basketball players are accused of shoplifting expensive sunglasses from a Louis Vuitton store.

At the UCLA campus in Los Angeles, students are in a state of shock over the arrests. The university's famous basketball team is playing Georgia Tech Friday in Shanghai. But the three young men accused of shoplifting will not play and are confined to their hotel and may be stuck in China for weeks. 

According to Chinese law, the case must be resolved before the players can be allowed to leave.

Twenty Chinese police officers reportedly swarmed the hotel and spent five hours interviewing the entire team before detaining the accused players.

One of the players is LiAngelo ball, a member of the high-profile Ball family. His brother Lonzo plays for the Los Angeles Lakers and his younger brother, LaMelo, is a top high school prospect. 

They have their own online reality show, Ball in the Family, and sneaker line called Big Baller Brand. 

ESPN caught up with the family patriarch, Lavar Ball, in China. 

“I got nothing yet," he said. "I'm going to wait until I got some more intel on what's going on. Then I’ll let y'all know."

When asked if he had any concerns, the dad, a social media personality, said, “It’ll be fine. Everybody making it a big deal.”

The three accused could face a three- to 10-year prison sentence if convicted.